This is part of a year-long ‘Love for Local’ series called NB365: portraits of New Brunswick entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations. Huddle is a media partner with Love for Local. Today, we hear from Brenda Pugh of The Gathered Cottage in Woodstock.
FOR OVER 30 YEARS I HAVE BEEN A HAIRSTYLIST, AND MOST OF THOSE YEARS I’VE BEEN SELF-EMPLOYED. THE GATHERED COTTAGE EVOLVED SIMPLY OUT OF A PASSION FOR HOME DECOR, ANTIQUE AND VINTAGE STYLES, AND REFINISHING FURNITURE AND COMPLETELY DIY PROJECTS FOR MY OWN HOME AND FAMILY.
That love of creating a comfortable space has always been something I’ve tried to accomplish. I remember decorating or cozying up my bedroom as a young girl, knowing it just makes you feel good to be surrounded by things you love.
So more recently, as a DIY girl at heart, I started refinishing furniture. I soon discovered Fusion Mineral Paint. A Canadian-made product and company ran by a mother/daughter team from Toronto that has exploded all over the world in 6 short years! As I used the product and loved it, I started refinishing furniture for trade shows. I love staging and setting up my booths, and more and more people bought my work! I got so much encouragement, and then was asked dozens of times where my store was, and that I should open a shop.
I feel my store has certainly grown and I’ve adapted to the changes. Last year, was a huge year for The Gathered Cottage. I say I survived and thrived with the total support of local shoppers. It could have gone either way and I’m so grateful that customers continue to come in!
I’ve always said from day one, I want coming into my store to be an experience, a step back into a simple time. So many customers come in, stop and take a deep breath. They comment on how good it feels, and they just needed to come in to walk around and relax. That makes me so happy!
Supporting local business has had a huge impact on my small store as well as many others in our community of Woodstock. Without our friends and neighbours, we truly wouldn’t have gotten through the past year. My heart is full and the dream is alive!